Author: Randeep Singh / go to all articles on Yoga cure
Yoga for Kyphosis:
Kyphos is a Greek word which means hump in English.
Kyphosis is a condition in which the thoracic spine is abnormally curved outwards, resulting in a conspicuous hump like projection in its side view. other names for this spinal condition are round back or hunchback.
Thoracic spine is naturally curves outwards to an angle between 20 degree to 45 degree, anything higher than that is termed as Kyphosis. Yoga for Kyphosis helps reduce this curve to normal.
Can you reverse Kyphosis with Yoga?
Reasons for kyphosis are many : Postural and structural. Postural Kyphosis is the result of prolonged pressure on the thoracic vertebrae due to its bending forward position. People with tendencies to hunch due to weak spinal muscles, emotional distress for longer periods can freeze the resultant curve permanently. This type of Hunch back condition can be easily corrected by knowing about the correct standing posture. One must also learn how to sit the right way.
Structural Kyphosis can have myriad of reasons: Arthritis can cause kyphosis; any type of physical trauma; compression fractures resulting from osteoporosis disease; defective development of the spine during adolescence; Scheuermann’s disease; and multiple Myeloma.
Crushed vertebrae in the thoracic region due to compression fractures can throw the curvature of the spine outwards. Osteoporosis is a disease of the bones where the bones lose their mass and become weak and brittle. Such fragile vertebrae are easily prone to fracture, compression fracture in general and can lead to a hunchback.
Scheuermann’s disease is a condition where the vertebrae have developmental defect, the surface area of the anterior side of each vertebrae in the thoracic region is developed much less than the surface area on the posterior side. This gives it a triangular shape when seen from the side instead of the normal rectangular shape. Thus the spine curves outwards abnormally due to this imbalance in the shape of the vertebrae.
The spinal discs are the liquid cushions between each vertebrae which keep the space between them evenly balanced over the entire surface of contact. Due to aging or other factors these intra vertebral discs loose their hydration unevenly leading to the tipping of the vertebrae to one side causing the kyphotic curve.
Defective formation of spine before the child is born also leads to round back condition. Ehlers-Danlos, and marfan syndromes are also responsible for causing Kyphosis in children. Certain cancers of the spine, chemotherapy treatments for such cancers can also lead to kyphosis.
Facts about Kyphosis
- Round back is more prevalent in males than in females
- In case the angle of the bend in the spine is very sharp, it can compress the lungs & the heart leading to breathing or cardiac difficulties
- Kyphosis can cause physical debility to the extent that the affected person cannot perform even the simplest of daily tasks
- Very acute hunch back can cause compression on the digestive system which can impose restrictions on swallowing, the compressed stomach can even push its contents back towards the mouth, a condition known as acid reflux.
- People with Kyphosis have often been found to hold a weak body image of themselves, leading to a reduced self esteem and mental stress which can harm in different ways.
From among the treatments available for Kyphosis Surgery, physical therapy , and wearing braces are some of the options currently available. so far surgery hasn’t been found to be a long lasting solution to kyphosis. In majority of the cases of structural kyphosis the surgery was required to be redone after a few years in order to re correct the relapsed condition.
Using braces for long can weaken the not being used spinal muscles which is a impediment in maintaining the healed hunchback after the brace is removed.
Yoga as a physical therapy, yoga works unlike other workouts, is very effective in relieving Kyphosis. Yoga for spine works by strengthening the muscles responsible for holding the spine erect along with re adjusting the vertebrae back into position.
Yoga asanas like the forward bends when alternated with the backward bends can align the individual vertebrae, if yoga techniques which work on the vertebrae are emphasised upon, in its original form. Yoga techniques which involve vertical stretching of the spine also benefit by replacing the spinal sections into their natural formation.
Below is given the set of yoga techniques which are very effective in treating kyphosis. Clicking on them will take you to the details of the individual techniques.
Kyphosis Treatment with Yoga
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